L Brands Names New CEO at Victoria's Secret

L Brands replaced the CEO at the Victoria's Secret division after just two years.
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L Brands  (LB) - Get Report replaced the chief executive of its Victoria’s Secret lingerie unit less than two years into his tenure.

The Columbus, Ohio, retailing company has suffered from Founder Leslie Wexner’s association with the deceased sexual predator Jeffrey Epstein and early on from the coronavirus pandemic. 

The shift of women's preferences away from racy couture also has hit Victoria’s Secret over the past few years.

But the stock has jumped since June amid an earnings rebound. L Brands recently traded at $39.17, down 1.5%, but it has more than doubled year to date.

As for the personnel changes, Martin Waters was named CEO of Victoria’s Secret Lingerie, succeeding John Mehas, who had taken the post in February 2019.

Waters joined L Brands in 2008 as head of the international division. Previously, he was managing director for Boots International, the European health and beauty retailer.

Morningstar analyst Jaime Katz was impressed with L Brands’ earnings report last week.

“In a knockout third quarter, no-moat L Brands posted stunning results that included 14% sales and 28% comp (direct and store) growth metrics, as spot-on assortment connected with customers,” she wrote in a commentary.

“The most noteworthy result from L Brands' third quarter was in its operating margin improvement, with 1,440 basis points of expansion, to 18%. For reference, third-quarter operating metrics have averaged 8% over the last five years. … 

"0We plan to lift our $29 fair value estimate by a high-single-digit rate in response to recent outperformance and sales momentum going into the holiday season.”

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